Greater Palm Springs will host viewing parties during what is being called the Great American Eclipse Aug. 21.
The total solar eclipse, the first in nearly 40 years, will cross the United States beginning around 9 a.m. in Madras, Oregon, and finish around 4 p.m. in Columbia, South Carolina.
Locally, the solar eclipse can be viewed at three viewing events:
Palm Springs Public Library
The Palm Springs Public Library has joined more than 1,000 libraries across the country to participate in the celestial event of the century.
There will be a viewing party from 9:30 to 10:45 a.m. Aug. 21 outside the library. Eclipse viewers will be able to see a partial eclipse (approximately 65 percent to 75 percent coverage). Bring your lawn chairs and telescopes. Mix 100.5 Radio will broadcast live from the event and the Farmers Market, PS Sustainability and Desert Water Agency will have community booths at the event with giveaways, information on their programs, and more. The library will hand out its remaining solar eclipse viewing glasses while supplies last.
Prior to the eclipse, the library will offer a few public programs to bring the excitement of STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) to children and adults.
Youth are invited to come to the Library at 1:30 p.m. Aug. 16 to make their own shoe box viewer and hear a special eclipse story. Then at 6:30 p.m. that same evening, adults can hear Dr. Stephenie Slahor discuss both lunar and solar eclipses, historical events and information to prepare for the upcoming eclipse. At the toddler story time from 10-11 a.m. Aug. 17, a special story will be read. At the end of all of these events solar viewing glasses will be given out, one per attendee, while supplies last. Due to limited supply, glasses will only be given out at Library programs.
Palm Springs Public Library, 303 S. Sunrise Way, 760-322-7323; palmspringslibrary.org
Palm Springs Aerial Tramway
The Tram plans to open early Aug. 21. Tickets will go on sale at 7:30 am. with the first tram car heading up at 8 a.m.
Mount San Jacinto State Park interpreter Allison Barnes will lead the viewing event from 8,000 feet above the Coachella Valley. The eclipse begins at 9 a.m. and reaches its peak around 10:25 a.m.
The program will take place on the viewing deck of the Tramway’s Mountain Station with the park providing NASA-approved solar-viewing glasses for the first 50 people and a telescope with a solar filter.
Palm Springs Aerial Tramway, One Tram Way, Palm Springs, 760-325-1449; pstramway.com
JOSHUA TREE NATIONAL PARK
The park will offer 800 pairs of solar glasses Aug. 21 at its entrances at Twentynine Palms, Park Boulevard, and at Cottonwood on the backside of the park (off Interstate 10).
The park’s main event will take place from 9-11:30 a.m. Aug. 21 at the Oasis of Mara Visitor Center in Twentynine Palms. Rangers will provide materials to make your own pinhole camera. A solar telescope will also be available for viewing.
The event is free, but park entry fees still apply.
Joshua Tree National Park, Mara Visitor Center, 74485 National Park Drive, Twentynine Palms; 760-367-5500; nps.gov/jotr
RANCHO MIRAGE PUBLIC LIBRARY
Courtesy of the Moore Foundation, the library will hand out 150 pairs of solar eclipse viewing glasses on a first come, first serve basis Aug. 17 starting at 9 a.m. Only one pair of glasses per person.
The library will host a viewing event from 9-11 a.m. Aug. 21, and will have a limited supply of eclipse glasses available for library patrons. On the same day, a special storytime and craft will be held for children from 9:30-10:30 a.m.
Rancho Mirage Public Library, 71100 Highway 111, Rancho Mirage, 760-341-7323; ranchomiragelibrary.org
SKY’S THE LIMIT OBERVATORY AND NATURE CENTER
Sky’s The Limit will be host a solar eclipse event Aug. 21 beginning at 9:45 a.m. Solar glasses will be provided and telescopes will be available to view the eclipse safely. Do not bring binoculars or telescopes. Be sure to wear sunscreen and bring snacks, water bottles, and chairs. Children under 16 must be accompanied by adults. No pets, no smoking or alcohol allowed on the campus, and visitors must carry out all trash.
Sky’s The Limit Observatory and Nature Center, 9697 Utah Trail, Twentynine Palms, 760-367-7222; skysthelimit29.org